Monday, May 14, 2007

The evolution of what?

Consumers are faced with enough choice. Product managers are forcing themselves to innovate along unnatural curves created by the Web 2.0 craze, an influx of fresh capital, and an incredible amount of talent that is willing to push the edge.
I have spent a lot of time looking at the evolution, but what are we trying to evolve here? The evolution is simple - product and technology companies are now moving from their own closed door policies to one of open innovation.
In the model of closed innovation, focus groups and studies are created before a product manager goes to develop their product specification. This model relies heavily on product managers as the "super user" and does not show much to the consumer.
In the model of open innovation, many insights are pulled together from the real world and product managers must factor all of these in while defining feature sets. This model relies heavily on communities talking to one another and a product manager advocating ther requirements.
Technology moves at a blinding pace, but it is clear that snap decision making is becoming more autonomous with better information and collaboration happening in the marketplace.
I can't wait to see what products and services are in store for us in the next few years. Already, our devices are starting to think for us, telling us what we need to do and when we need to do it. The question of the day is - is this what people really want?

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